Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Room with a View: Dingle, Ireland

"Charming Dingle"
5" x 3" Watercolor Sketch

"Rainy Day Over Conant Pass"
5" x 3" Watercolor Sketch
Dingle Peninsula is the Western-most point of Europe, so the folks who live in this traditional Gaelic area like to say "The next parish over is Boston." Fortunately, though all signs are in Gaelic, the people speak English for other mere mortals in "An Daengaen." The town of Dingle with about 2000 souls living there is the largest and very charming.
We like to stay in modest places with a down-home feel, so we use Rick Steve's books extensively. We selected small inns and B&Bs for the majority of our accommodations, run by owners who live in the home. We meet lots of interesting independent travelers and seem much less exposed to theft. The owners can give lots of good advice. In Dingle, I made arrangements by e-mail to stay in Eileen Conant's B&B. We took several trains to Tralee and then an hour's bus ride to Dingle, a trip of about 7 hours. The train transfers were all timely -- walk from one to another and go.
Above you see the view from our cozy room with traditional homes and the mountains. The second painting shows a view of Conant Pass from a photo I took through the rain from the bus window. You see the fields that rise up the hillsides. They were every shade of green imaginable and support herds of sheep.

We took an archeological tour in a mini-van given by Tim Conant, Eileen's retired Police Chief husband. We also took a boat ride and enjoyed the friendly dolphin Fungi who adopted the people of Dingle years ago. Bob bought a Irish low whistle and got to jam with local musicians. We visited two traditional music venues, one a church, and the other The Small Bridge Pub.

 Bob plays the Irish Low Whistle with Mike Herlihy on accordian and friend on piano
Mike is written up in the travel books and generously bought us drinks at the pub where he played.


Jerry said...

I've always wanted to get over there, everyone says its a lovely place to visit and your post hasn't done anything to dampen the idea!

CrimsonLeaves said...

I totally agree with Jerry's comment. Also, I love the painting journal of your trip that you did. These are wonderful little snippets of your vacation!

Tourism Ireland said...

Beautiful Paintings! :)
So glad that you had a great time in Dingle and even got to meet our marine resident Fungi!
Jerry and CrimsonLeaves, if you would like more information on Dingle and Ireland, you can check out our website! http://goo.gl/9WsUt We hope to see you both in Ireland very soon, so you can experience the beauty of our country for yourselves. Why don't you check out our youtube channel as well, it can give you a glimpse of the majestic scenery we have! http://goo.gl/mx2KF

hw (hallie) farber said...

Mary--wonderful paintings. You and Bob really know how to travel; you don't just sightsee, you join the people. Sounds like great fun.

Mary Paquet said...

Friends, I will take time in a couple days to catch up on blogs. I've had many major commitments since arriving home.

Also, I wasn't sure whether to post the Tourism blurb, but thought some folks might actually use their information.